Curtain-raiser

• Amy Swerlowycz, Allira Humberstone, Ron Arthurs and Robyn McCoy in ARENAarts’ first production in the old Maylands Autumn Centre.

LOCAL amateur theatre troupe ARENAarts’ first production in their new Maylands home kicks off this weekend.

The actors secured a two-year lease of the old Maylands Autumn Centre back in July and while waiting for the building’s stage and lighting to be upgraded, have been rehearsing a production of You’ve Got Hate Mail.

Director Simon James said it was the perfect play to get the ball rolling.

You’ve Got Hate Mail struck me as a play that could be staged in-the-round in the auditorium area, so it fitted in perfectly with our renovation plans,” James said.

“I also found it to be rather funny and loved the themes of miscommunication in a time when it’s never been easier to communicate with each other.”

Written by Billy Van Zandt and Jane Milmore, the story follows Richard (played by 40-year theatre and film veteran Ron Arthurs) who accidentally sends his wife an email intended for his mistress.

“Richard is a lawyer and a womaniser who cannot help himself,” Arthurs says.

“The trick will be keeping a straight face as the craziness unravels and also not interacting directly with other cast members, as the script dictates.”

Arthurs told the Voice that apart from a new name – it’s now the Roxy Lane Theatre – ARENAarts has also been sub-leasing the space to former users such as the local Lions club and ratepayers association, as well as providing a venue for homeless theatre companies.

You’ve Got Hate Mail plays October 20, 25, 26 and 27 at 8pm, with a 2pm matinee on October 21. Tix are $20 and $16 concession from http://www.whatson.com.au/arena or by calling 9255 3336.

There’s some adult language and themes in the play, so it might be best to leave the nippers at home until the next time the Wiggles are in town.

by STEVE GRANT

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